Australian Marine Stinger Advisory Services














The science of predicting marine stingers is still an active area of research. We know how to detect them most of the time (by monitoring their plankton indicators), and we know how to predict them up to about a day or two in advance in many instances. However, we do not yet know how to predict them weeks or months in advance with any sort of precision.


Predicting Irukandjis:

Certain factors appear to be highly indicative of the presence of Irukandjis, especially in combination:

- Sustained northeasterlies
- Flat calm weather
- Cool oceanic current
- Salps and jelly buttons seen in water
- Jelly buttons washed up at high tide line
- Sea lice felt in the water
- Afternoon high tide

However, Irukandjis have been reported under all conditions, including rough weather and wintertime.


Predicting box jellyfish:

Box jellyfish are much more predictable than Irukandjis, and much more common. The most probable conditions to encounter a box jellyfish are morning or afternoon when they are out having a feed, bays or beaches where the water is calmer (especially at the southern end of bays or beaches), near rivers or mangroves.

They are commonest during the warmer months, generally being found in large numbers after the monsoonal rains begin, and being commonly encountered until the weather cools in May or June.

We believe that box jellyfish spend the winter out in deeper water, but may come in to shore any time if the conditions are right.


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Copyright © 2011 Australian Marine Stinger Advisory Services. All rights reserved. Page modified 8 August, 2011 10:41